I have to comment to other 2 discussions for each discussion this time. After you finish 02 discussions, please give me some ideas, thinkings about the thing some friend of mine did. I am willing to give you an extra credit for these. Thanks in advance.
Here are the discussions that some friend of mine did as follows:
- Discussion 1:
* As a 21st century viewer, I would describe this portrait of being a painting of a couple that is expecting a child in the near future by looking at the woman in the picture. I would also say that they might be getting ready to go out for the evening to an event or social because of their dress attire in the portrait. But also in the portrait, it does state that the woman is not expecting but this is just my interpretation just by looking at the portrait itself.
The photographic quality of Jan Van Eyck's work is much more realistic and clear in style in comparison to some of Leonardo da Vinci paintings. Even though I like most all of Leonardo da Vinci paintings, but the quality, realistic and clearness of Jan Van Eyck's is or can be pretty likeable as well.
Looking upon this double portrait as a person of this day and age I would say to me it is a portrait of a man and wife and they are soon to have a baby. It looks as if there is a crib in the background (difficult to tell). I also would think that judging from what I have learned about symbolism, the fact that the shoes are off means that they are on holy ground - or maybe to them this baby to come is a blessing from God. If I was to hold up my dress it would mean I was going to start walking. It is possible that she is about to leave the room. The dog in the portrait would only mean to me that the pet is part of the family as well. Because of the positioning of the shoes, I would think the woman was already in the room when the man entered, his shoes kicked off a little half-hazardly and close by. The hand holding is a gesture of their love and possibly with his hand up to silence the room. The reflection in the painting's mirror looks to be a woman and a man. Perhaps the man in the mirror is the artist and through his own vanity wishes to be a part of the painting. The woman looks to be a heavier woman and maybe a symbol of a matronly woman like a mother or mother-in-law. I might think she was coming to assist with the baby to come. The pregnant woman seems to be looking lovingly to the husband; however, the man seems to have a different expression, not even looking toward his love but is almost looking deep in thought.
Jan van Eyck's photograph-like paintings look as if you could walk into the scene. It is very real and what the eye sees. Robert Campin is unable to pull this quality off in his paintings. For example, the Merode Altarpiece may show a room that could exist in the real world; it is almost cartoon-ish compared to Eyck's style of painting. The table looks almost like cardboard. You could not simply "walk into" his painting.
- In Discussion 2:
My reaction to Hamlet's soliloquy would be very revengeful. Yes I do sympathize with his situation that he is place in and would have wanted to do the same thing if I knew who had murdered my father and why. I see Hamlet as being alone with himself, an intensely self-reflective souls tormented by the very act of self-reflection.
Yes I do agree with Hamlet's assessment of man's reason for living because of the period in which he lived in reflected this way of life and most people tend to adapt to the ways of life due to his or her surroundings.
I also feel that this play continues to be relevant to contemporary audiences because only the contemporary people of today would be able to see the understanding of the play and relate to Hamlet in different ways and also understanding why Hamlet did what he did i his time when it comes to the meaning of the play.
After reading the soliloquy, I believe Hamlet is at war with his own conscious. He is tormented by what he feels he needs to do but needs additional motivation to get the job done. When he has the idea to have a play for his uncle about the death of his father, he is hoping to catch a moment of guilt from his uncle. This may be the motivation he needs to complete the task asked of his father's ghost. Hamlet is also worried that the ghost is not really his father. He is worried that he is being tempted by the devil in deceitful ways to do something bad so he must test the uncle to find out if he has really done what the ghost says is so. I also believe that it is an attempt from Shakespeare to get the audience to understand why it is Hamlet needs to do what he has to do and to touch on those own emotions within themselves.
I would describe Hamlet more so as being ultimately consumed with himself and what he is going through. I do not think he feels "it's all about me" as much as he feels overcome with torment...so much so that it drives him to distraction beyond anything else.
I think I could possibly sympathize with the situation. If my father were killed for the gain of another I would want to seek revenge of some sort regardless if a ghost was telling me to do it or not. It is a natural feeling to want to protect your own and when you have no control over the situation you may want to do something to gain control once more - that could mean an act of avenging the death.
I am unsure if I understood man's reason for living - other than they were too scared to take their own life so they lived with all the sufferings in life. Frankly, suicide to me is the coward's way out so I do not agree with him at all.
I think Hamlet continues to be relevant to contemporary audiences because it shows a deeply disturbed and distraught part of human's that everyone can relate to at one point or another. This play probably speaks to the audience and plays on their own emotions and innermost feelings.